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5 definitions found
 for shire
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Shire \Shire\, n. [AS. sc[imac]re, sc[imac]r, a division,
     province, county. Cf. Sheriff.]
     1. A portion of Great Britain originally under the
        supervision of an earl; a territorial division, usually
        identical with a county, but sometimes limited to a
        smaller district; as, Wiltshire, Yorkshire, Richmondshire,
        Hallamshire.
        [1913 Webster]
  
              An indefinite number of these hundreds make up a
              county or shire.                      --Blackstone.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     2. A division of a State, embracing several contiguous
        townships; a county. [U. S.]
        [1913 Webster]
  
     Note: Shire is commonly added to the specific designation of
           a county as a part of its name; as, Yorkshire instead
           of York shire, or the shire of York; Berkshire instead
           of Berks shire. Such expressions as the county of
           Yorkshire, which in a strict sense are tautological,
           are used in England. In the United States the composite
           word is sometimes the only name of a county; as,
           Berkshire county, as it is called in Massachusetts,
           instead of Berks county, as in Pensylvania.
           [1913 Webster]
  
                 The Tyne, Tees, Humber, Wash, Yare, Stour, and
                 Thames separate the counties of Northumberland,
                 Durham, Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, etc. --Encyc.
                                                    Brit.
           [1913 Webster]
  
     Knight of the shire. See under Knight.
  
     Shire clerk, an officer of a county court; also, an under
        sheriff. [Eng.]
  
     Shire mote (Old. Eng. Law), the county court; sheriff's
        turn, or court. [Obs.] --Cowell. --Blackstone.
  
     Shire reeve (Old Eng. Law), the reeve, or bailiff, of a
        shire; a sheriff. --Burrill.
  
     Shire town, the capital town of a county; a county town.
  
     Shire wick, a county; a shire. [Obs.] --Holland.
        [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  County \Coun"ty\ (koun"t[y^]), n.; pl. Counties (-t[i^]z). [F.
     comt['e], fr. LL. comitatus. See Count.]
     1. An earldom; the domain of a count or earl. [Obs.]
        [1913 Webster]
  
     2. A circuit or particular portion of a state or kingdom,
        separated from the rest of the territory, for certain
        purposes in the administration of justice and public
        affairs; -- called also a shire. See Shire.
        [1913 Webster]
  
              Every county, every town, every family, was in
              agitation.                            --Macaulay.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     3. A count; an earl or lord. [Obs.] --Shak.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     County commissioners. See Commissioner.
  
     County corporate, a city or town having the privilege to be
        a county by itself, and to be governed by its own sheriffs
        and other magistrates, irrespective of the officers of the
        county in which it is situated; as London, York, Bristol,
        etc. [Eng.] --Mozley & W.
  
     County court, a court whose jurisdiction is limited to
        county.
  
     County palatine, a county distinguished by particular
        privileges; -- so called a palatio (from the palace),
        because the owner had originally royal powers, or the same
        powers, in the administration of justice, as the king had
        in his palace; but these powers are now abridged. The
        counties palatine, in England, are Lancaster, Chester, and
        Durham.
  
     County rates, rates levied upon the county, and collected
        by the boards of guardians, for the purpose of defraying
        the expenses to which counties are liable, such as
        repairing bridges, jails, etc. [Eng.]
  
     County seat, a county town. [U.S.]
  
     County sessions, the general quarter sessions of the peace
        for each county, held four times a year. [Eng.]
  
     County town, the town of a county, where the county
        business is transacted; a shire town.
        [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

  shire
      n 1: a former administrative district of England; equivalent to
           a county
      2: British breed of large heavy draft horse [syn: shire,
         shire horse]

From Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 :

  45 Moby Thesaurus words for "shire":
     Kreis, archbishopric, archdiocese, arrondissement, bailiwick,
     bishopric, borough, canton, city, commune, congressional district,
     constablewick, county, departement, diocese, district, duchy,
     electoral district, electorate, government, hamlet, hundred,
     magistracy, metropolis, metropolitan area, oblast, okrug, parish,
     precinct, principality, province, region, riding, sheriffalty,
     sheriffwick, shrievalty, soke, stake, state, territory, town,
     township, village, wapentake, ward
  
  

From Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856) :

  SHIRE, Eng. law. A district or division of country. Co. Lit. 50 a. 
  
  

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